Tuesday, January 15, 2008

The Accretionary Wedge Carnival!

The Accretionary Wedge carnival is a monthly forum amongst geobloggers highlighting some of our favorite gripes, pleasures and intuitions. It is entertaining to see how our colleagues and associates think! This month's theme, hosted by Green Gabbro (http://greengabbro.net/) is your (least) favorite misconceptions in geology, and an alternate choice, pies and geology (in honor of national pie day on January 22). Here is my submission...check it out and add your own!

Every semester I start a section on earthquakes with my students offering their assumptions and misconceptions about earthquakes. Some of the most popular:
1. California will fall into the sea
2. California has the largest earthquakes in the world
3. California has the most earthquakes of anywhere in the world
4. The ground opens up and swallows people
5. Psychics predict earthquakes
6. Animals predict earthquakes
7. We are waiting for THE BIG ONE!
8. The safest place in an earthquake is a doorway
9. All California quakes happen on the San Andreas fault
Since there is at least a (very) small element of truth in a (very) few of some of these, it leads to a good discussion on earthquakes.

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